10 Prepping Mistakes That Could Kill You (and how to avoid them)
Everyone makes mistakes, but when it comes to Prepping, all of our efforts are directed toward actions that are designed to either keep us safer, prolong our lives or stave off some disaster that could be prevented with a little foresight and planning. When it comes to survival, mistakes can kill you and that is the last thing we want to happen isn’t it?
In this article I wanted to discuss some common prepping mistakes that I have seen over the years and ideas I have that I believe will help the person new to prepping avoid them. I do this with the hopes that others will realize how some of these actions can put you at a distinct disadvantage in your prepping efforts in the best case, but could result in death in others.
Preparing for a single event
All too often we come to the world of prepping due to outside stimulus. Something triggers either an awareness or sense of need in us that drives us to learn more about being prepared. For a lot of people out there, Y2K was just this type of event and before the clock struck midnight on December 31st 1999 millions of dollars had been spent on survival gear and preparedness items to plan for the disaster that was supposed to happen. As you all know by now, nothing happened at midnight; planes didn’t fall from the sky and our country wasn’t sent back to the Stone Age.
When this happened a lot of people became disillusioned with prepping. They looked at the money they had spent on supplies and felt foolish for believing the hype about the approaching doomsday scenario. As a result, they sold all of their gear on Ebay and a lot of people were able to buy unwanted survival supplies for very cheap.
Preparedness shouldn’t be for a single event. You should prepare for any event that could put you or your family in danger. There are common prepping basics you should follow and while they might be motivated by a single event like the threat of Ebola, you shouldn’t believe that if Ebola never happens that all of your preparations are worthless. Think of all the people who sold their freeze-dried food, survival weapons and gear. If we had another disaster after they sold their supplies, they would have been back at square one and just as desperate as someone who didn’t prepare at all.
Preparing for a specific date
Similar to people who planned for Y2K, there were those who feared the Mayan Calendar ending at the end of 2012. They did the same thing when nothing happened and the world kept on spinning. The danger of prepping for a specific threat that is date-based is believing that nothing else in the world could happen to you. Natural disasters in the form of wildfires, earthquakes, floods, tornadoes, winter storms happen every year and any supplies you store should keep you alive regardless of the disaster. Don’t believe that if the world doesn’t end, you will never see any disruption causing event in your life.
Even people as far south as Atlanta were caught unprepared last year as a relatively minor winter storm stranded thousands of motorists on the side of the road. Now, I will grant you that this isn’t as ominous as the end of the world as we know it, but wouldn’t you rather have supplies in your car if you were stranded due to a winter storm that caught you by surprise? Most disasters don’t keep appointments so you never know when they will strike. It is better to be prepared all of the time instead of when the calendar says a disaster is supposed to happen.
Bragging about your prepping supplies
I advocate that everyone should practice OPSEC as much as possible to avoid the problem of having hordes or your friends and neighbors appear on your doorstep in the event of a disaster. When you tell everyone that you have food stored up, weapons and ammo and all the supplies you would need to last for years if the grid goes down, you are inviting trouble.
In desperate times, people who have nowhere to turn will act out of desperation. Your friends who didn’t prepare will view your food supplies as necessary to keeping their children alive. By your actions of bragging about what you have, you now have a potential threat to your life and the lives of your family in someone who knows that you have food and who knows their children will die without it. Keep your preparations secret unless you want to share with the world. In that case, expect your food, supplies and anything you have to be taken from you in a worst case scenario.